However what the gossip and the op-eds didn’t point out was that the true shock wasn’t Haqqani’s public appearances—it was that he was showing in any respect: A number of instances during the last twenty years, the US army thought they’d killed him in drone strikes.
Clearly Haqqani is alive and properly. However that raises a evident query: if Khalil ur-Rahman Haqqani wasn’t killed in these US drone strikes, who was?
The standard bland response is “terrorists,” a solution now institutionalized by the best ranges of the US safety state. However the last days of the US withdrawal from Afghanistan confirmed that’s not essentially true. A day after an assault on troops at Kabul’s teeming airport, for instance, the US responded with a “focused” drone strike within the capital. Afterward it emerged that the assault had killed 10 members of 1 household, all of whom had been civilians. One of many victims had served as an interpreter for the US in Afghanistan and had a Particular Immigrant Visa prepared. Seven victims had been kids. This didn’t match the generic success story the Biden administration initially instructed.
One thing totally different occurred with this strike, nevertheless. For years, a lot of the aerial operations the US has carried out passed off in distant, rural places the place few information might be verified and never many individuals may go to the scene.
However this strike passed off in the course of the nation’s capital.
Journalists and investigators may go to the positioning, which meant they may simply fact-check every little thing the US was claiming—and what had truly occurred quickly grew to become clear. First, native Afghan tv channels, like Tolo Information, confirmed the members of the family of the victims. With a lot consideration being paid to the withdrawal from Afghanistan, worldwide media shops began to reach, too. A detailed report by the New York Times forced Washington to retract its earlier claims. “It was a tragic mistake,” the Pentagon mentioned throughout a press convention, because it was compelled to confess that the strike had killed harmless civilians with no hyperlinks to ISIS.
Actually, America’s final drone strike in Afghanistan—its final high-profile act of violence—was eerily just like its very first one.
On October 7, 2001, the US and its allies invaded Afghanistan with a view to topple the Taliban regime. That day the first drone operation in history took place. An armed Predator drone flew over the southern province of Kandahar, referred to as the Taliban’s capital, which was the house of Mullah Mohammad Omar, the group’s supreme chief. Operators pushed the button to kill Omar, firing two Hellfire missiles at a gaggle of bearded Afghans in unfastened robes and turbans. However afterward, he was not discovered amongst them. Actually, he evaded the allegedly exact drones for greater than a decade, finally dying of natural causes in a hideout mere miles from a sprawling US base. As an alternative, America left an extended path of Afghan blood in its makes an attempt to kill him and his associates.